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National Service projects running in {{ startYear }}-{{ endYear }}


Start year: 2005 {{currentYear}}
End year: {{lowerYear}} {{currentYear+1}}

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The question was posed: Where does ICHEC fit into the research landscape in Ireland?

To begin to answer this question it is important to understand some terminology. In Ireland there are seven universities, 13 institutes of technology, colleges of education, independent and further educations centres and other national research institutions such as the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies. Staff and students of these institutions can gain access to ICHEC general-purpose computing resources (such as Fionn) by submitting a project and are termed users.

Projects differ by size, class, and domain, for example, a small "Discovery" (Class C) project in the chemistry domain with three users or a large multi-year "Grand Challenge" (Class A) project in engineering with 10 users. Further details of the Full National Service can be found here. Also, ICHEC has numerous computational scientists, staff, that support the users during the course of their project.

So in summary there are users, project classes (A,B,C), project domains (Physics, Chemistry etc.) staff, Institutions, and ICHEC. The challenge was to represent these data in a single info-graphic. The diagram above created using d3.js is the result and an explanation of its creation is described below. This graphic is an update from last year's version.

But to answer the original question, ICHEC stands at the heart of computational research in Ireland.


Graphic Description

  • This diagram is an undirected graph that illustrates the connections or edges, between nodes: ICHEC, the Irish academic institutes, companies, staff, users and project class and domain. Readers of graph theory will understand the concept of nodes and edges. The layout of the graph is carried out using a Force based algorithm from d3.js. This graphic is an extension of the d3.js force based example.
  • ICHEC is represented by a grey circle in the centre if the diagram. Institutions are colour coded diamonds.
  • The ICHEC staff and end users are shown in black using diamonds and squares respectively.
  • Projects are shown as circles colour coded depending on the particular domain, e.g. physics projects are shown as blue circles. The size of the circles reflects the project class. The larger circles are class A projects.
  • The graph is interactive - nodes (institutions/users/staff/projects) can be moved by dragging them. Placing your cursor over the nodes reveals the name of that node.

Graphic Development

The challenge in preparing this graph was to manipulate data so that the d3 javascript library could be used. All the required information was extracted from our internal database. Then a script was written to generate json data for all projects that ran on the ICHEC machines during a certain time period.


{ nodes:
   [ { name: 'Irish Centre for High-End Computing',
       group: 1,
       ichec: true,
       users: [ 'Alin Elena' ],
       projects: [ 'Evaluation and comparison of two OpenACC compilers' ] },

     { name: 'Evaluation and comparison of two OpenACC compilers',
       group: 3,
       domain: 8,
       clas: 3,
       startDate: '201209110000',
       endDate: '201309100000',
       code: 'iccom001c',
       pi: 'Gilles Civario',
       members: [ 'Gilles Civario' ] },

     { name: 'Alin Elena',
       group: 2,
       job: 0,
       insitution: 0,
       personid: 8 } ],

  links:
    [ { source: 0, target: 1 },
      { source: 2, target: 0 } ],

  domains: { Computing: 8 },

  jobs: { 'Computational Scientist': 0 },

  insitutions: { 'Irish Centre for High-End Computing': 0 } }

Each node was given a group variable with the following definitions:
Users and project were given a domain variable with the following definitions:
Finally projects were also given a cl variable to distinguish between A, B and C:

The connections between staff, users, projects, institutes and ICHEC were defined with links as shown in the code above. Each edge or link as a source and target. These numbers are the indices of each in the nodes array. The value of one describes it as a single connection.

By Maciej Goszczycki, from Colaiste Chroabh Abhann as part of his ICHEC work experience between the 7th and 11th of April 2014.